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As to the OPs question......Classic Wonder Nine: Smith & Wesson Model 59 :: Guns.com

This link sums it up pretty well as I remember it. I had forgotten that Mas Ayoob was high on it. I knew he liked the 39.

"''Soon after it was released, the Model 59 proved popular in LE use, with Massad Ayoob detailing the Wrentham, Massachusetts, PD may have been the first to adopt it. By 1974, Las Vegas Metro was carrying the M59. Some departments of the era reportedly compromised by issuing the Model 59 while buying a smaller stock of Model 39s for use by detectives and those with hands too small to wrap around the larger grip of the double-stack. "''
"''Keep in mind that in 1971, when the Model 59 debuted, guns like the Beretta 92, SIG P220, and CZ75 were still on the drawing board and would be a few years away from making it to the U.S. "''

I believe that the model was cloned internally and sold under a different brand and take the same mags. I think the current one may be the Tisas Zigana F9, I am told they cannot keep them in stock. Note the similarity, controls are the sames,etc.I think they made 4 models of them, I tried to buy one on line last year, but they are sold out and I am low on the waiting list and while I am on several notify lists, none have come through. .The dealers like Buds who also have storefronts give their local customers first shot hard to find Guns so we may not see them for sale on line for a long time. The last one I saw for sale was $130 over MSRP,so I refused.


Model 59
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I would certainly trust the Tisas, and they were under $300 at one time.. I have read it is the same gun, by reviewers but I have never seen one. None of the major online dealers have them in stock. FWIW My 2 cents.
Hungarian FEG GKK-92C was a closer clone of SW 59, with hint of BHP style front end, hammer, and grips.
 
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